We will open our borders
Oblivion, Chapter 1
Quick recap: Elysia washed up on a tropical island with no recollection of her past and a painting hidden in the pockets of her dress. Now, a young girl leads her up a mountain where she hopes to discover where she is.
Matt Evans of Fog Chaser composed a beautiful musical score for this chapter. I hope you enjoy his meditation on Oblivion as you read.
The girl walked before me. She could not have been more than six years of age, her long black hair folded into a low bun, her brown arms draped with a midnight blue kimono, her waist bound by an intricately embroidered obi.
She led me up white marble steps that climbed into the mountains, a rich vein of turquoise winding through them as though leading toward some prescient destiny. Tree trunks twirled around themselves as though braided by unseen hands and heaps of pink petals were flung from their arms, flicking up the sunlight as they wandered across the path.
As her bare feet climbed into the sky her skin became kissed with mist and then in a moment the girl was gone, lost in the clouds as though enveloped by a dream. The air turned pink around me, the clouds melting in droplets of water, then in a breath we were above them, wisps of purple atmosphere curling their way across a tranquil lake.
Above the clouds, the world glistened with sunlight, and just before us, a white pagoda knelt amidst the clouds. From that cerulean daydream stepped a woman, her black hair knotted at the nape of her neck, her pale pink kimono lulling against the stairs as she stepped toward us.
“Welcome Elysia,” the woman replied with a smile. “I am Ama, would you care to join me for tea?”
I stepped inside, the clouds drifting through the open pagoda as I sat before a small table. Ama knelt before me, lifting the strainer from a teapot as she revealed long strands of jasmine interspersed with pink petals. The scent was reminiscent of spring, of the warming sun against my skin, of some memory I could no longer place, of someplace I could no longer remember.
Ama poured tea into small white cups, whisps of warmth spooling from them in tranquil breaths of perfume. “Where are you from?” she asked then, her eyes folded toward the gentle work of her hands.
“I don’t remember,” I said. “It is as though I fell asleep and now… where am I? Have I really traveled so far as Asia?”
The woman turned her eyes toward me, studying my appearance as though it were an oddity. And perhaps it was. For it was then that I became aware of my own existence—of the bright red hair that unfurled down my spine, of the freckles that trickled across my skin, of the fair complexion that betrayed a certain far awayness.
Ama took a sip from her cup. “Perhaps once,” she said after a moment. “Though such a place hasn’t existed for quite some time.”
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